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7 Reasons Why You Need to Get The Dark Base Pro 900

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We chose the Dark Base Pro 900 as our case for our ultimate Entrepreneur's Custom Gaming/Work PC. Most entrepreneurs nowadays aren't buying computers anymore due to the high cost of buying a laptop/work station every 2-3 years. Technology is fast moving and entrepreneurs are seeking to build their own Work/Play Rig. When building your own PC, one of the most important components is the Case. A poorly made case can make your space look unsightly, reduce the life and performance of your internal components, and also be loud and annoying to operate. And that's why the Dark Base Pro 900 caught our attention. The company behind the Dark base 900 Pro is be quiet!...take a guess what they focus on. Be quiet! is a premium brand manufacturer of power supplies and cooling solutions based in Germany. This case is part of complete build that we will be finishing up within the next couple of months. We're building the ultimate Work/Gaming PC for entrepreneurs and startup founders. And after months of research, we'd like to present you the 7 reasons why we chose the Dark Base Pro 900 .

1. Beautiful Design

First and foremost, we chose the case because it has a timeless look. It's not too flashy, too edgy, or too over-the-top with all the curves and lines you'd find in other cases. The beauty is subtle and controlled. Our first impression of the case is one of awe and admiration. We reviewed it in our conference room and our staff constantly peaked in to see what we're reviewing. You can choose between Orange, Silver, or Black trim. We chose the orange trim. It's a full tower case featuring brushed aluminum & ABS casing all around, and 4mm thick tempered glass side panel. Coming in at 14.39kg without parts inside and measuring at 577mm deep, 243mm wide and 585mm tall, it's definitely not a case you can easily move around. But then again it wasn't designed to be portable. We also appreciated the subtle and tastefully branding placed on the metal side of the case and in front. The orange outline is a solid color and doesn't glow, which we don't mind. The case does come with RGB lighting kit and it's relatively easy to install.When placed on a desk presents a timeless beauty that doesn't beg to be noticed.

2. Functionality

We needed a case that was going functioned as well as it looks. Below are some attractive features of this case that sold us.Good ventilation: It's a highly breathable design with ventilation mesh surrounding the entire casing on both sides ensuring abundant airflow.Motherboards Compatibility: The Dark Base Pro 900 (and even non-pro version) is compatible with a wide range of motherboards. You'll be able to fit XL-ATX, E-ATX, ATX, Mini-ITX, and even Micro-ATX motherboards. We like to keep our options open when it comes to motherboards.Front Ports: On top you have the  I/O  button with 2 USB 2.0 ports, 2 USB 3.0 ports, and HD audio jacks. Your Audio and Microphone ports are in front and easily accessible instead of having to plug from the rear. We wish it included a USB-C port, but it's not a deal breaker.QI Charger: On the top Panel there's a QI charger for you to place a compatible device there to charge. This is the first time we've ever seen this feature on a case.Fan controller and RGB LED color switch: You can adjust the fan speed directly from the front panel and cycle through multiple color scheme of the RGB lighting. All these can be controlled without turning the computer on and going into some sort of interface.One small aesthetic thing we didn't like was the misalignment of the orange line (pictured below). It's not a turn off, however would've been nice if it was perfectly aligned.  

3. Cooling

No high-end machine can function for long if it wasn't built with cooling in mind. The fans alone in this case make it worth the extra money. Instead of having to shell out money for decent fans, be quiet! includes 3 SilentWings 3 fans installed out of the box. The fans are 140mm PWM fans with a unique blade design which be quiet! claims to improve air circulation. There's a fan in the rear and 2 fans pre-installed on the front panel. You can install an additional fan on the top deck (most likely for CPU cooler) and you can also install a single 120mm fan on the bottom. We also liked how accessible both air filters are on this case. Both can be accessed from the front panel with ease.  

4. Build Quality

As noted above the entire construction is made from brushed aluminum, ABS, steel for internal frame, and 4mm thick tempered glass. The Dark Base Pro 900 Pro's entire case is also lined with a fairly thick (about 4-5mm) high density sound absorbing foam that serves to reduce noise level. The front panel door is held shut by a magnet. Our complaint about this is that the magnet is awfully weak and doesn't hold the door in securely. However the door does open and close properly.When carrying the case around you won't get a wobbly contorted feel of a cheaper case. It's solidly built and stays in shape even when being manhandled a bit. Looking at the 4mm thick tempered glass gives you an idea of the attention to detail that goes into the build. A this point it probably sounds like be quiet! paid us a lot of money to toot their horn, however that is not the case. We really do enjoy reviewing and showcasing the craftsmanship that goes into building this product. The 4mm thick tempered glass is precisely beveled to ensure it doesn't scratch or damage the case or your furniture when disassembling.

Tempered glass thickness

 

5. Attention to detail

We've reviewed hundreds of products and we can tell when the people who made it actually loves the product or not. And it all shows in the attention to detail that they put into designing and building it. The Dark Base Pro 900 's easily removable thumbscrews for tempered glass panel, the rear, and most of the internal components are a nice touch. This makes adding/removing parts and disassembling a breeze.The glass panel also doesn't just sit on a metal screw. We've seen this in a lot of cases and it hurts our souls each time we remove and put the glass back on, knowing we're scratching the inside ring each time. Be quiet! didn't just put a rubber seal on top of the screw, no that's not enough. They have the rubber seal secured in place by a plastic housing which lodges itself snuggly inside the case. From a manufacturing standpoint, they could've easily gotten away with a much cheaper solution. But gladly they didn't.And do you see the orange rubber washer protecting the case from the screw? It's the little things that could've gone unnoticed, but didn't, that truly makes a this case a product of love and care.  

6. Carpet and Wood Friendly

Why is this even a selling point you may ask? It's a small touch thats often overlooked and not appreciated until you see damages on your carpet, desk, or expensive wooden floor. You won't find small pointy feet here. Nor will you find cheap plastic caps that could damage wooden table or floor. The foam inserts are glued tightly into a specifically carved cavity. This makes the feet extra secure when sliding or moving around. And the large dimension feet serves a dual purpose of protecting your flooring and providing enough clearance between the floor and the case.  

7. Highly modular and customizable

This was one of the best selling features that sold us. The Dark Base Pro 900 was built to be highly configurable to your specifications. You can have the glass panel on either the left or the right. Inside there's two 5.25" drives, seven 3.5" drives. If you're not using 3.5 drives and instead uses 2.5 SSD, you can fit 15 SSD here. Not entirely sure why you'd ever need that much space, but it's there. You can also remove the cages to improve circulation and fit larger 1080 GPU's. The entire case is highly configurable and can be customized for whatever configuration you want to put inside.   

Final Thoughts

The Dark Base Pro 900 Pro isn't just a case. It's a beautiful piece of art, an engineering beauty, and a product made to withstand the test of time. They didn't skimp on any parts to save money. The engineering team at be quiet! did quite a lot to the case, but the one thing they didn't do is compromise it's quality. A few pictures can't tell the whole story. Once you start working with the case and installing components, you start to see all the little things they did and all the details they didn't skimp on. We're glad we chose the Dark Base Pro 900 as our case for the build. Please stay tune for our complete build coming soon.Top 5 GTX 1080TI GPU of 20175 Best Gaming Mouse for Work and Play Interested in buying? Get it for $250 on Amazon.

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The Power Of Storytelling

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Today’s consumers are an extremely connected, discerning bunch, and engaging with them requires a thoughtful approach to communication. Reaching them goes beyond pitching your product or service, even if you think they’ll love it. It’s about effectively tapping into their values and lifestyle and finding a way to connect on a more personal level. But, how do you get them to care and ultimately choose to invest their time and money in you? One secret is an age-old method, but it's a powerful one: it's the art of storytelling.
Storytelling is intrinsic to every culture. From creation myths to legends and folk tale, it’s at the core of what makes us humans and how we relate to each other and the rest of the world. It works in PR and marketing because it allows us to connect with our audiences and take them on a journey; one that stimulates feelings, ideas, and attitudes consistent with our marketing goals. The word “storytelling” can sometimes get bad rep, especially when associated with the PR profession and our reputation to put a “spin” on things. But storytelling can be genuine, authentic and most importantly, effective, when it comes to empowering a brand and forging more meaningful relationships with their audience. The human brain is hardwired to remember stories, not to recall facts or data.First, let's elaborate on why it's vital for a brand to have a story. It breathes life into what might otherwise may be considered a cold corporation solely interested in the bottom line. People connect with other people and storytelling allows you to sell a brand, rather than a product. Successful brands are subtler when it comes to promotions and are more focused on being part of a bigger conversation, because today’s consumers expect more from the companies they support. Both the public and the media love a good story, and want to align with brands that are authentic and transparent. They want to know about the real people behind a brand and the causes they're committed to. Storytelling is about entertaining, educating and engaging with an audience to build that emotional connection that can lead to earning a customer’s loyalty.The first step is identifying your story. What do you want to be known for? How will you stand out? And, why should people care? This is where public relations plays a key role. One responsibility of public relations is to uncover a story that a brand’s audience will care about. Most of the time, a business already has a fantastic brand narrative, heartwarming anecdotes or a rich history that lends itself perfectly to the story. But often, the team is too close to the brand and doesn’t recognize the value in sharing. Bringing in a professional storyteller, like myself and my team of brand strategists and creative copywriters, provides an unbiased perspective and the know-how to tell that story in the most effective and lasting way possible. Storytelling is at the core of public relations, as we seek to influence reputations, perceptions and behaviors. To meaningfully relate to journalists and your target audience, we need to tell compelling stories. We are expert wordsmiths, developing an authentic voice that speaks louder than what many today see as "canned" advertising. Simply announcing a product launch isn’t effective anymore. The news needs to be in the context of something bigger to convince whomever we’re talking to that our announcement affects them and they should care. And a truly good PR team knows how to get the most mileage out of your story, and continue to build upon momentum gained; it’s not a one and done deal, we make your story work for you!Storytelling is not cookie cutter. A good story could start with an interesting origin that traces back to humbler beginnings, or shine a light on a company's unique culture. It could also be as simple as expanding on a fun fact, such as an ice cream chain with its highest performing location in Alaska. However, some of the most impactful stories are purpose-driven. Research has shown time and again that when a consumer feels good, it translates to more sales at the register, even if they must pay a premium. It gives them another reason to choose you over the other “good enough” options, even if you’re the more expensive choice.For example, we worked with an iconic fast food chain with a rich history and its largest share of customer made up of baby boomers. It was time to appeal to their next generation of guests. We worked closely with the team on a for-cause marketing campaign designed to support the brand's desire to give back while making an impression amongst a younger crowd. A cross country RV tour to help feed and clothe the homeless, enlisting the help of high school-aged volunteers? It was the complete package, and to think they almost didn’t talk about it! Not only did it have that feel-good aspect, but it was visually compelling which was perfect for reaching a digitally-driven consumer. In a world bombarded with information, the saying ‘a picture speaks a thousand words’, has never rung truer. We weren’t shouting why the brand was better or shoving promotions down throats. Rather, we offered a platform for the students involved and the homeless community to share their thoughts and stories, which always came back to our client in the most organic way. The media was especially receptive to the message and it was a story they wanted to share. For those touched by the campaign, the brand would now be remembered for being more than a fast food chain. It’s a brand that cares about the communities it serves, and that is a major differentiator.Your story is what sets you apart from your competitors, but a story is only truly good if it is heard. As media strategists, we understand how, where and when to tell the story and who to tell it to. PR professionals also help connect the dots so that your narrative complements your overall brand messaging. Of course, we understand that storytelling is a means to support bigger sales and marketing initiatives.Today, storytelling is not only an essential part of your brand identity, it helps your customers feel connected and closer to your company. In a time when millennials are calling the shots and their passion lies within brands that stand apart from the rest, it’s imperative now more than ever to have your story be told. The fact is, everyone has a story to tell.  The companies that do it well often succeed and, more often than not, they have a professional storyteller assisting them. So, what's your story?
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Startup Central

5 Presentation Options Other Than PowerPoint

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Microsoft's PowerPoint is a very popular choice for presentations. For most part, it is easy to use and is considered as an industry standard. However, PowerPoint has become boring. Over the last 15 years, we have been bombarded with the same looking slide and effects. If you’re looking for a change, you've come to the right place because we found presentation options that are free and better. Check these out.

Canva

Canva is a beautiful online interactive presentation website. Many backgrounds and slide designs are free. If you want to buy premium themes and slides, you can buy them at $1. The tool is priced at $12.95 per month for business use. Canva allows users to print blog graphics, flyers, posters, Facebook covers and many more.When you register to the website, it has an interactive tutorial that allows you to learn how to use the website quickly. It has over 10 million users and is available for PC and Apple users. Out of many presentation options, this is a good tool for everybody who wants an easy-to-use presentation tool that is flexible and affordable.

Prezi

If you're tired of "old slides", throw them away and replace them with Prezi. This is one of the best alternatives to PowerPoint because unlike slides, Prezi's zoom presentation options allow users to the relationship between the big picture and fine details. This feature takes viewers on an compelling informative journey that they will not only enjoy but also remember.  With Prezi, there are no "dull" slides, only non-linear presentations that are more exciting.Prezi is an easy way to show context but be careful because it can also cause dizziness. Paid version of the tool features additional storage space and the ability to use the tool locally.

Google Slides

Google has their hands in many pies, including the presentation pie. Google Slides is as cloud-based tool that can be used by a lot of people. Just like other Google products, it can be authored by different users. This tool is able to create, comment and real-time edit slides. Users can also create slides without an internet connection making it a good alternative to people who are not connected all the time. Visit Google Drive and create slides, it's that easy.The new version of Slides has embedded video, animation and a wide array of free templates that can help you create presentations, pitches and portfolios. Access your presentation from your phone, tablet or PC. All changes are saved automatically so there is no need to click save. Google might be basic but it is very flexible.

Keynote

Microsoft PowerPoint is to Apple Keynote. Their presentation options are rich with great tools for creating presentations using its many templates. Keynote is a good PowerPoint alternative because it puts design as the forefront of your presentation. This tool has built-in graphics tools so that you can edit and tweak to your heart's content. Compared to PowerPoint, Keynote's user interface is also more user-friendly. Create stunning and memorable presentation with real-time collaboration. Keynote can also handle embedded media and graphics and can be downloaded at the Apple app store.

Emaze

As a cloud-based presentation tool, Emaze is responsive with pretty elements. Create attractive and dynamic presentations with free pre-made templates. All you need to do is to populate the template with graphics and content to amaze your audience. The free package is great but to access the premium package, $9.90 per month for unlimited space and sharing, offline viewing and privacy controls. As you can see, PowerPoint is not the only presentation tool you can use. Some of these alternatives are cloud-based, free to use and allow users to "save as" to other formats. The most important thing to remember is that these tools are just tools. The most important thing to remember for presentations is the content. Cool slides and flashy graphics miss the point if they cannot educate and inform the audience. So make your slides cool but most importantly, provide content.
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Startup Central

3 Questions To Ask Before Hiring A Potential Employee

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The job of evaluating potential employees can be hard. It can be hard to find out if the person is a good fit just by looking at their resume or an interview. Human resources usually have a set of questions they ask in order to find out if the individual is a good fit for the company. Here are questions you need to ask before hiring a potential employee.

Can They Do An Extremely Good Job?

Companies hire people for various reasons. However, the primary reason is always so that they can do work. Many people can do a specific kind of job. They go to school to get training and have knowledge in how to do a specific type of job. Many of them also get experience through their exposure of different kinds of job throughout their lifetime. But how do you know that they can do a good job for your company.Look at their resume. What is their background and what are their reasons for leaving their last job. Past employment is important because the reason they left can impact your organization. Think about it, if they left because of incompetence or negligence, they could commit the same mistakes again and cost your company its reputation or money.Ask them how they can do a good job. What characteristics do they have to that will benefit the company the most? Remember, many people can do the same job. This person should be able to do the same job but to another level.

Can They Do An Extremely Good Job, long term?

Now that you know the person can do a good job, will they be able to sustain it long term? Performance is important but long term performance is even better. In order for an organization to have a long lifespan and its blood needs to perform constantly at a high level. The best employees can sustain a high quality of work over time. Slip ups are common because it is natural to do so. However, a consistently high quality of work that can be sustained long term is even more important.It's easy to stay enthusiastic and motivated the first couple of months, but what about years from now? Will this person be able to stay motivated and enthusiastic? How will he or she face challenges and drawbacks?This can be answered by asking two questions: 1. What are the person's goals, 2. How are their goals aligned to the organization.

Are they a Good Team Fit?

Remember, it doesn't matter how good a person is if they're not a good fit for the team or if they cannot work with a team. You need people that are driven to contribute and grow. If their goals are not aligned with yours it does not matter, they will not fit in the team and the organization.Imagine hiring a team that is the cream of the crop. The team needs a new member so you decide to hire a top performer. However, this performer is not a team player. He or she undermines your team and is unwilling to work with them. Furthermore, his goals are not compatible with the organization's. How do you think his behavior will impact the team or your company?Team work is important not only for individual success but for the team and company too. A good employee does not only think of his job but also the welfare of the company. He understands that it is a symbiotic relationship where one cannot exist without the other.Hiring goals are very important. They define the future of the company and affect its performance both short term and long term. If you are interested in growing your company, think about your company culture and embed it in your hiring process. Finding a way to keep hiring standards high should be a priority among managers as this will affect the overall health of the company.
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